GM plants will be carbon-free by 2025
General Motors Co. said Thursday it's switching to source 100% renewable energy power at all of it U.S. sites by 2025 — five years ahead of its previous target date.
The move, GM says, aims to avoid 1 million metric tons of carbon emissions that would be produced from 2025 to 2030. GM's goal of sourcing only renewable energy for its global operations remains unchanged at 2035. GM is already moving to power its Spring Hill, Tennessee manufacturing facilities from a 100-megawatt solar farm under TVA's Green Invest program by late 2022.
Rival Ford Motor Co. has said it's on track to source all renewable energy for its manufacturing plants globally by 2035 but has not broken down that down into a U.S. goal.
GM has a list of climate commitments including becoming carbon neutral by 2040 with its products and operations. It "aspires" to offer a lineup of only emissions-free new light-duty vehicles by 2035 and will be rolling out 30 new electric vehicles globally through 2025.
GM on Thursday also said it's collaborating with PJM Interconnection, a regional transmission organization, and TimberRock, a tech energy company, to track carbon emissions at GM facilities, which could expand to include tracking emissions from customers' electric vehicles.
Delta projects "modest" loss for fourth quarter
Delta Air Lines posted a $1.2 billion profit for the third quarter on Wednesday, helped by the latest installment of federal pandemic aid for the airline industry, but warned that rising fuel prices will lead to a "modest" loss in the fourth quarter.
The airline also expects higher labor costs as it hires thousands of employees to replace some of those who left the company last year, when the pandemic's impact on travel was most brutal.
Shares of Delta, the first U.S. airline to report third-quarter results, fell 6%, and other leading U.S. carriers including American and United dropped between 2% and 4%.
Delta said travel demand is improving after hitting a flat spot when COVID-19 infections in the U.S. jumped over the summer, fueled by the rise of the so-called delta variant.
"We are seeing bookings pick up materially over the past four or five weeks," CEO Ed Bastian said. "As the variant has receded, people are starting to get back out."
Delta operated at 71% of its 2019 passenger-carrying capacity in the third quarter and expects that to rise to 80% in the fourth quarter.
Biden pushes 7 more offshore wind farms
Seven major offshore wind farms would be developed on the East and West coasts and in the Gulf of Mexico under a plan announced Wednesday by the Biden administration.
The projects are part of President Joe Biden's plan to deploy 30 gigawatts of offshore wind energy by 2030, generating enough electricity to power more than 10 million homes.
Interior Secretary Deb Haaland said her department hopes to hold lease sales by 2025 off the coasts of Maine, New York and the mid-Atlantic, as well as the Carolinas, California, Oregon and the Gulf of Mexico. The projects are part of Biden's plan to address global warming and could avoid about 78 million metric tons of planet-warming carbon dioxide emissions, while creating up to 77,000 jobs, officials said.
"The Interior Department is laying out an ambitious road map as we advance the administration's plans to confront climate change, create good-paying jobs and accelerate the nation's transition to a cleaner energy future," Haaland said. "We have big goals to achieve a clean energy economy and Interior is meeting the moment."
In addition to offshore wind, the Interior Department is working with other federal agencies to increase renewable energy production on public lands, Haaland said, with a goal of at least 25 gigawatts of onshore renewable energy from wind and solar power by 2025.
— Compiled by Dave Flessner